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Sunday, July 26, 2015

#Project2016 - A Short Review

Few weeks ago Office products of 2016 preview version were released, that includes Office 2016 suite products, plus Project and Visio. 
All of these products are available in desktop and office 365 formats for trials.
I have shared the links to download/install preview of Office and Project 2016 in this post a while ago.
Since then I wanted to write my first hand review of Project 2016.
And here it goes:

Installation of Project 2016
First thing first, installation challenges.
Prior to installing Project 2016, same goes for Office 2016, you need to uninstall 2013 version of the same product as they both can’t stay together.
Anyone can uninstall, and then install the new version, right? Not really.
This wouldn’t be as simple as it sounds like if you also ever have installed Project 2013 office 365 version on your machine along with Project 2013 desktop version.
At least in my case, I have tried every possible way of removing 2013 version, but Project 2016 was kept crashing soon after it starts. Here, and may be few other places, have described a solution to an issue but it never worked for me and eventually I end up installing to a fresh VM that has no traces of prior version.

How it looks like
Exactly the same as its predecessor:

Compatibility with Project Server 2013

It works with Project Server 2013.
You can configure account to connect with PWA instance in a usual way.

The Ribbon

No changes in terms of design, or layout of tabs or options within those tabs. So no learning curve.

The first thing you will notice is: Tell me what you want to do  option on ribbon.

This is not just an online/local search option which can bring you list of URLs or commands to match you search, its much more than that and quite intuitive to use.

For instance I wanted to create/insert a milestone task in my project, I did:

Considering the first option most relevant to my requirement, I clicked on the first one Insert Milestone, and result is below:

Not only this helps you list down all the commands close to your requirement, it also performs action.
In past I have seen requirement of having interactive tutorial or guide which can help user with Project options while schedules. 
This option can fill that gap to some extent.

Multiple Timelines
Timelines were introduced in Project 2013, another way of presenting attractive summary of your schedules.

In Project 2016, it goes one step forward.
You can now create more than 1 timelines within same schedule.
Created one below to depict Project and Project summary tasks:

To create 2nd or more, click on timeline bar to insert another timeline:

And here goes 2nd timeline bar to present milestones of project:

The much awaited option, though not visible yet but would be either in a final version or once you will connect Project with Project Server 2016: Resource Engagement

Image taken from MS blog

Detailed description of Resource Engagement can be found here.

Enjoy Projecting 2016 J